Christine Sinclair set the world’s all-time international goalscoring record as Canada won 11:0 over St. Kitts & Nevis in the opening match of the 2020 Concacaf Women’s Olympic Qualifying Championship. Sinclair scored two first-half goals to bring her count to 185 international goals as Canada kicked off their qualifying campaign with three important points.
“I’m a very proud Canadian, and when I first joined the National Team, I had goals and dreams and aspirations of passing Mia Hamm one day. I obviously should have aimed higher, not knowing that Abby Wambach would have beaten her, but I never could have imagined reaching the totals that I have. For all who have supported me through my career, a massive thank you,” said Christine Sinclair on setting the all-time international goalscoring record.
Also for Canada, Adriana Leon registered her first four goal game while Ashley Lawrence scored twice and Jayde Riviere, Jessie Fleming and Jordyn Huitema each scored one goal. Kailen Sheridan and the Canadian backline posted the clean sheet.
“It’s a massive privilege to be part of this. It is history created right in front of your eyes and something I’m only a tiny little part of and it’s such a privilege and I’m so happy for Sinc,” said Head Coach Kenneth Heiner Møller on Sinclair’s milestone night. On the result, he commented that “We’ve been working a lot with our movements, no matter the opposition, and our movement is crisp. There are some things we need to work on, some early crosses and stuff but we’ve got players who can score from most positions.”
This was the first of three group matches for Canada at the 2020 Concacaf Women’s Olympic Qualifying Championship in Edinburg, TX, USA, the eight-nation confederation championship from which two nations will qualify for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Canada will next face Jamaica on Saturday 1 February (16.30 local / 17.30 ET / 14.30 PT) and then Mexico on Tuesday 4 February (17.30 local / 18.30 ET / 15.30 PT).
Sinclair opened the scoring with a penalty strike before Leon scored her first of four goals just five minutes later. On the second goal, Jessie Fleming played it down the wing for Riviere who centered for Leon to knock it in. Then six minutes later, Ashley Lawrence made it 3-0 on a shot from the distance.
Then in the 23rd minute, Sinclair made history with her 185th international goal. On the play, Fleming won the turnover from Calvonis Prentice, moved towards goal and played it to Adriana Leon, then Leon played it to Sinclair who finished with a right-footed shot from inside the box.
With the record set, Canada continued their scoring. Leon made it 5-0 after she was sprung through on a run into the box in the 26th minute; Riviere made it 6-0 on a shot from distance in the 40th minute; and Leon scored her third of four goals in the 43rd minute.
Goalscoring continued in the second half as Fleming (54′ minute), Lawrence (57′), Jordyn Huitema (74′) and Leon (80′) added to the Canada tally for the 11:0 win.
For this historic match, Canada’s starting XI featured Kailen Sheridan in goal, Jayde Riviere at right back, Ashley Lawrence at left back, Kadeisha Buchanan, Sophie Schmidt and Shelina Zadorsky along the back, and Julia Grosso, Gabrielle Carle, Jessie Fleming, Adriana Leon and Christine Sinclair from the midfield up through to the attack.